Politics as Usual
Tom Daschle has been complaining about everything Bush is doing. He seems to be heavy on criticism and light on suggestions. That in itself should tell you something.
It always seemed to me that the guy steering the boat determined some pretty important things of particularly importance to the people on the boat. He (or she) was responsible for getting the boat to its destination safely with no unscheduled direction changes or stops, no unsafe or illegal cargoes, no abuse of his power or position. Should the captain be of unsavory character, than the journey may be in doubt. Why is it then, we don't expect the same from the "LEADERS" of our country?
I think many of us are pretty UN-impressed with many of the "leaders" of our country but probably did little or nothing about it. Well, let me tell you about another, 'politics as usual' politician and why it just might be worth 10 minutes of your time and a 37¢ stamp.
Senator Tom Daschle, democrat, (ex) senate majority leader and a great defender of Bill Clinton to this day. Now despite the fact that he has been a staunch defender of the liberal left and a thorn in the side of George Bush, that is politics. What you need to be concerned about is this. Let me set the stage so you see the whole picture. Linda Daschle Tom's wife, is a lobbyist. Linda Daschle is on the payroll as a lobbyist for such companies as Boeing, United Technologies, American and Northwest Airlines, Schering-Plough (a pharmaceutical giant) and the American Trucking Association to name a few.
So what does that mean? Take American Airlines. AA was involved in 6 fatal crashes prior to 9/11, incurred thousands of dollars in safety violations and who's employees were caught in drug smuggling operations. So what happened? She lobbied for watered down safety and security regulations. American than participated in the post 9/11 airline bailout thanks to Linda and her husband.
The CBS program "60 minutes" linked Tom Daschle with inappropriate intervening to reduce safety inspections on a charter airline owned by a family friend. The airline later had a fatal crash killing the pilot and a doctor.
Congress has been asked to authorize the U.S. Military to lease 100 Boeing aircraft for 10 years for a sum of 37 Billion dollars yet these same planes could be purchased for 25 Billion and could be used for 20 to 30 years. Duh!!!
A provision of the 2000 transportation budget requires the FAA to buy baggage-scanners from one of Linda Daschle's clients, L-3 International. The DOT's inspector general has found the L-3 equipment to be substandard, yet the FAA has to buy one L-3 for every one of the competitors. The inspector told congress that one of the reasons they could not make the new airport mandate is because it was required to buy so many defective scanners (made by L-3). Remember the liberal news showing scanners not being used in some of the nations airports? They were inferring that they were not being used simply because the airports wasn't employing them. The fact that they didn't work and were made by L-3 International wasn't mentioned. See how half a truth is worse than a lie? Do you really think Linda's lobbying has nothing to do with Tom' position? Do you really think Monica was fixing Clintons zipper?
The air transport industry gave more than $100,000 in campaign contributions to the senators campaign in the last election. Northwest Airlines paid Linda Daschle's "firm" $190,000 in 1999.
There is more, lots more but I know you have important things to do. You know, feed the dog, buy some beans and get a haircut. We all have our priorities.
"A man who has nothing which he cares about more than his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." John Stuart Mill 1806-1873.
In the off chance that you were at least mildly concerned about what goes on in Washington (D.C.), it is a long way away, you could do this. You could write: The Hon. Harry Reid, 528 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510. Reid is the head of the ethics committee. You could say something like:
As a U.S. citizen and taxpayer, I am outraged that Senate Majority leader Tom Daschle seems to be ignoring the ethics requirements of his office with impunity from censure or even investigation by your committee. I respectfully demand that you cease protecting Senator Daschle and launch a full investigation into the flagrant conflict of interest charges inherent in his wife's lobby work on behalf of some of America's biggest companies - all with interests before the U.S. Congress. Let me quote some of the Senate's own rules:
- "A member or employee should never use the prestige of influence of a position in the Senate for personal gain."
- "Members, officers, and employees of the Senate generally may not represent others in a private capacity before the government."
- "Members, officers, and employees may not receive any compensation, nor permit any compensation to accrue to their benefit, by virtue of the improper exertion of official influence. Nor may they advance legislation with the principal purpose of furthering their own narrow pecuniary interests."
Senator, in this country no one should be above the law! I ask you to put the national interest ahead of partisan interest in pursuit of this matter.
John Q IReallyGiveAShit
You could log on to this site, http://www.judicialwatch.org/and look up some of the hundreds of abuses, check some of the links to an dozen other sites that list hundreds more abuses. Or you could take out the garbage, feed the dog and say, "It's not my problem or It wouldn't make any difference." It is a convent way to justify doing nothing.
"Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted; the indifference of those who should have known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most; that has made it possible for evil to triumph." -- Haile Selassie
Tom Dashle's political stats
Current Committee Assignments
NOTE: All the numbers on this page are for the 1997-2002 Senate election cycle and based on Federal Election Commission data released electronically on Monday, January 06, 2003 . ("Help! The numbers don't add up...)
AC Contribution Breakdown
Stats courtesy of Center for Responsive Politics.
News & Information
Daschle allies find new way to funnel funds
By CHUCK RAASCH
Gannett News Service
Campaign-finance reform forces changes in fund raising
WASHINGTON - As Majority Leader Tom Daschle shepherded the most significant campaign-finance reform in a generation through the Senate, some political allies and ex-aides were forming two groups that could typify the next generation of big-money political spending.
In February and March, former Daschle aides and political allies formed two corporations, called 527s for the section of the federal tax code they fall under, that will allow them to raise money and spend it for political purposes.
Some campaign-finance experts predict that similar groups could soon dot the landscape, taking in the large "soft money" donations that now go directly into the coffers of political parties or the political action committees of politicians.
Flying Past Daschle. Reporting on congressional hearings into the FAA letting planes fly with unapproved or counterfeit parts, CBS's Dan Rather warned May 24 of "possible airline disasters out there just waiting to happen." He could have started with Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle. While each network devoted at least one story to the hearings, they have yet to cover allegations that Daschle influenced safety inspectors' treatment of a South Dakota friend's air carrier company that suffered a fatal crash. A May 7 New York Times story by Neil A. Lewis contained the most serious allegations yet, involving Daschle's wife Linda, second in command at the FAA.
Lewis wrote: "According to department investigators, at least two senior FAA officials have said Mrs. Daschle broke a promise to withdraw from cases involving her husband and instead played a prominent role in quashing a proposed FAA experiment that would have trained Forest Service flight inspectors in South Dakota to conduct inspections for the FAA." Mike Wallace's February 60 Minutes story remains the only TV story on the scandal. Courtesy: Center for Responsive Politics